I've written before about the liminal Gods of the Fairy Witchcraft I practice, including the seasonal pairings of the Lady of the Greenwood and Lord of the Wildwood and Queen of the Wind and Hunter as well as the sisters Thallae and Thessilae, the Lord of Mischief, and the Queen of Apples; in my books I've also touched on several others relating to the ocean and storms. The thing about these deities is that there is no set pantheon of mythology, they are fluid beings and every single human will interact with different ones or combinations of them. This is a system that is meant to be experiential and personal, not rigidly structured and also one that is highly dependent on who a particular witch connects to or who connects to them. I do realize that this approach is foreign to many people who are used to having pantheons handed to them, so I wanted to expand a bit here on the variety that can be found and also why I chose to make the seasonal pairings the most prominent initially and how this doesn't reflect an inherent heteronormativity (although I understand why it seems that way).
The key descriptors of a liminal god is that they are not a named god from a pantheon (that they'll admit anyway); go by titles instead of names; are intrinsically connected to the Otherworld; are viewed or treated as monarchy or similar there; and can profoundly effect a witch's life. They may be extremely regionally specific or more universal, may be shared with other fairy witches or personal to an individual witch. Of course I will add here that a fairy witch can also connect to or be dedicated to a named deity; there's no rule that says it must be a liminal god only a deity that is strongly connected to the Otherworld.
When I wrote my first book on Fairy Witchcraft back in 2014 I felt strongly that it was important to offer a way for people to begin connecting in to this energy and world. The easiest way to do this is to start honouring the most universal and open of the liminal gods, which are the two seasonal pairs. Think of them in a way as the gateway gods to fairy witchcraft. They are two couples, a queen with a king, who each rule over six months of the year respectively, and over two seasonal fairy courts. I suspect these seasonal courts reflect something of a cultural paradigm that these beings have embraced, but that's speculative on my part. They certainly embody many paradigms of older folklore and belief as well as some modern aspects, and are probably because of that, the most approachable of the liminal gods. They are also the easiest for people coming from or into neopaganism to relate to and connect with as they follow and embrace the procession of seasons and earth based seasonal holydays that are popular. Again creating an easy gateway or bridge for people new to the path.
The two sisters are another pairing, although they are neither a couple in the sexual sense (obviously) nor a ruling pair. They do however embody balancing forces of healing and death and perhaps embody deeper mysteries. Because they are forces of mortality, whether through health, illness, or death, they are also relatable to many humans and therefore easier for witches to begin connecting to. And they can offer a useful place for people to look to in dire circumstances that won't by necessity mean making a bargain with more dangerous powers.
The Lord of Mischief appears alone, and is a fluid being. As I describe in the initial blog about him, he is a spirit of fun, high spiritedness, and trouble, as well as travel. He is also a patron of sorts to lovers - one of his other titles (punnily enough) being Knight of Love - and that applies to any and all lovers and all types of love. He is not part of a pair of any kind but is probably the most actively fluid, in every sense, of the liminal gods I've previously discussed. If its fun, feels good, and makes people happy its his purview. He is one of the more intensely Fae and Fey of the liminal gods I've discussed and definitely not for everyone.
The Queen of Apples* is discussed in my work with she/her pronouns because I tend to see her as a girl (literally of about 14 or 15) but as I stated when I first wrote about her I strongly feel that is not a set gender but an appearance; she tends to be androgynous to me and also asexual. She is the patron of brothels and by extension of all sex workers. If it seems enormously contradictory to have a being that appears as a teenage girl with androgynous/asexual energy as the patron of sex work I'd agree but that's a very Fairy contradiction. She is also a deity of protection, healing, revelry and madness. The Queen of Apples was the first liminal god that came from shared gnosis and she, like the seasonal pairs, seems to be a great deity for people to begin with or focus on.
These are brief descriptions of the main liminal gods that have been discussed publicly over the last 7 years. Now I started this by saying that liminal gods can be personal and unique and that is a basic premise of my style of fairy witchcraft. The ones discussed here represent the public aspects, the ones that are open to anyone with an interest in this type of witchcraft. There are also however many others that people could potentially find themselves meeting. The fairy queen I owe allegiance to, for example, is not one of these. And when it comes to who a witch might encounter there really are no set patterns or limits - it doesn't have to be a queen/king pair, nor an androgynous queen ruling alone. I suspect there are long and complex reasons why we do find these cross-gender pairings most often and why the Queen is usually the more powerful force. The seasonal pairs do present as heteronormative but that's for some complex reasons rooted in human expectation, mirroring the natural world in specific ways, and feeding on a lot of established folklore that empowers them. The rest....have different paradigms not based in pulling power from human belief in the same way. That's a complex topic to dig into but suffice to say here that the Good Folk are known to both mimic human culture as well as reflect inverse human norms**, and also have a deep history of behaving in ways humans find morally perverse and of embracing humans who are themselves outside what is considered typical for gender and sex. With that all in mind you may find yourself connecting to a same sex pairing, a polyamorous grouping^, an individual or any combination thereof. You may find the liminal deity you connect to is androgynous or overtly sexual, who are chaste or orgiastic. You may find liminal gods who are themselves fluid in how they present both their gender and sexuality. These are powers that are ancient and outside momentary human social norms and so cannot be easily pigeon holed into any one perspective or expectation. But if you are most comfortable with a heterosexual pairing then that is certainly an option.
The ultimate message here is that fairy witchcraft is a path that not only accepts but embraces the full spectrum of LGBTQ+ and consensual relationship formats because that range is what we find among the beings we are honouring and connecting to. When we dive deeper into theology around the liminal gods we will inevitably uncover contradictions and contrasts which rather than dilute these beings reflect their complexity. We also find that every human has their own experiences in part because of the way these beings choose to interact with them, usually through a lens unique to that human.
They do not lie but they will give a person what that person expects or needs at a particular time to move a situation forward. And perhaps more importantly in fairy witchcraft without the rigid structure of set pantheons each witch connects to the liminal god or other deity that they most resonate with personally or who feels most drawn to or by that person.
*I actually have some intense UPG here and believe there is a liminal god by this name but also a Higher Power of the Other by teh same title, for whom this liminal God is a facet.
** see my article on gender among the Good Folk for more on this
^ I would have to do an entire separate post on polyamory or open relationships in the context of fairies but I don't want this to go too long